It is time to take gun control seriously

Staff editorial

Humans are dangerous. We have figured out how to create empires while other animals are still scavengers.

Humans have already started two world wars with hundreds of thousands killed to keep our country safe. There have been plenty of other wars and conflicts and battles throughout history that have costs literally millions to lose their life.

Every day across our country 100 Americans are killed with guns, that means 100 families have lost their brother, sister, mother, father or loved ones each day.  

There have been a reported 17 mass shootings through the first seven months of this year. That’s just 2019 alone, in 2018 there were 340 mass shootings worldwide.

Due to the increase in mass shootings, people are becoming more wary of crowds when they head out . While our government remains relatively silent — well they do talk a lot about gun laws but little ever happens — it is time for the younger generation to be heard.

Our Spotlight staff understands the Second Amendment and its place in American history, but we also feel it is time to have stricter gun laws and better background checks of those who do choose to buy a gun. We are not saying bans all guns, we are saying have stricter background checks and make the gun industry more regulated.

In has been proven that most mass shootings happen when a mentally unstable person gets a hold of a gun and develops a plan. These shootings are preventable, let me repeat that they are completely PREVENTABLE.

We could stop selling hunting rifles in Walmart — a company that has banned open carry in its stores — and only sell them in approved gun stores as one of the changes. Sadly, the average American doesn’t realize that if we don’t get stricter on gun laws that nothing will get better.

The United States has the 28th-highest rate of deaths from gun violence in the world. There are 195 countries in the world. Our state is in the top 20 of death by guns in the United States.

The national rate of gun violence in the U.S. is higher than in many low-income countries, and we are one of the wealthiest nations in the world. Prosperous Asian countries such as China and Japan boast the absolute lowest rates, though the United Kingdom and Germany are in almost as good a shape.

Japan has a long list of tests that applicants must pass before gaining access to a small pool of guns. Japan is a country of more than 127 million people, but it rarely sees more than 10 gun deaths a year. Japan enacted strict gun control similar to when America had prohibition that banned alcohol. Stricter gun control is one of the main factors separating Japan from the U.S., where the Second Amendment broadly permits people to own guns. 

Gun control is important everywhere. There have been six schools in central Indiana already this school year where a gun has been found, including here at Ben Davis where a student was found with an unloaded gun in a backpack.

No one here wants to be  one of those tragedies on the news with students dying at the hands of another student. We follow a “See Something, Say Something” philosophy which has proven to be effective. That needs to be expanded beyond the school. Communication is key in stopping gun violence.